5 star reads - Courtney

(Audiobook) Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane

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A profoundly moving novel about two neighboring families in a suburban town, the bond between their children, a tragedy that reverberates over four decades, the daily intimacies of marriage, and the power of forgiveness.

Francis Gleeson and Brian Stanhope, two rookie cops in the NYPD, live next door to each other outside the city. What happens behind closed doors in both houses—the loneliness of Francis’s wife, Lena, and the instability of Brian’s wife, Anne—sets the stage for the explosive events to come.

Ask Again, Yes is a deeply affecting exploration of the lifelong friendship and love that blossoms between Francis and Lena’s daughter, Kate, and Brian and Anne’s son, Peter. Luminous, heartbreaking, and redemptive, Ask Again, Yes reveals the way childhood memories change when viewed from the distance of adulthood—villains lose their menace and those who appeared innocent seem less so. Kate and Peter’s love story, while tested by echoes from the past, is marked by tenderness, generosity, and grace

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I was lucky enough to join @booksandmargs on Instagram for a buddy read for this book or I probably would have never picked it up. I genuinely love this book like the great alone by Kristin Hannah and where the crawdads sing by Delia Owen. These three books I will throw at everyone

This book has so many important messages about forgiveness, family, love, mistakes, and moving forward in life. I didn’t expect it to pull at all my heart strings like it did. I also didn’t expect to be rooting for Anne either so it’s a book that had me all tangled up.

You have multiple povs throughout the story. Your main characters start out Lena, Francis, Brian, and Anne, along with the kids. As time goes on though it eventually shifts to reading from Kate and Anne with some chapters in between from other characters. I hate multiple povs, but this one just worked for me. I didn’t find it confusing and it all seemed to blend together well while also knowing who’s POV you were reading from instead of being all jumbled. I also loved how you were able to shift into Kate and Peters adult lives and see how their childhood and that night affected them. 

Also am I the only one who just thought the cover was like watercolors 😳. I really never payed attention to the fact that they are houses. I will say this one is slow to start but quickly picks up and you left wanting more each chapter. Ask again, yes shows how flawed and complicated are relationships with each other are. 

There are also quite a few triggers in this book that have heavy topics, so if there is something on this list that triggers you I would definitely skip. Shooting, Slurs like faggot and cunt, Mental illness, Abuse, Child abuse, Molestation, Alcoholism and Still Birth

Overall this is an amazing book that I didn’t go into expecting to love as much as I did. Ask again, yes is so heartfelt and emotional and just gah. I want more books like this.

Courtney 💛

15 thoughts on “(Audiobook) Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane”

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